Keep your eye on Amazon. It's only a matter of time before the innovative e-commerce giant takes its new employee-exclusive Amazon Care service into the retail clinic space.

Why worry? According to Advisory Board, Amazon is in an ideal position to bring care delivery to scale. Quickly. Assets include:

  • Experience. As it develops its independently operated clinic.
  • Cloud computing. To support innovative clinical information systems.
  • Infrastructure. Ability to build a physical network via Whole Foods.
  • Reach. Vast consumer data and superior customer engagement.
  • Healthcare related acquisitions. Pharmaceutical drug and medical device supply chain that could bend the cost curve.

How will it impact your practice?

Amazon Care isn't creating new competitive threats. Health systems are already up against vertically integrated retail and pharmacy competitors. As such, you'll feel pressure on your business as it's diverted to Amazon's sites. That includes:

  • Pressure on your referrals, pharmacy and care volumes
  • Increased competition for staff
  • Pressure on your lab, imaging and infusion volumes
  • Heightened expectations for health management tools

Track indicators of Amazon's speed to scale

To predict when Amazon Care is ready to scale, take note when the company:

  • Proves that it can reduce the cost of care for its employees
  • Develops a physical infrastructure/hires more providers
  • Partners with/leverages health systems regionally/nationally
  • Creates a marketing strategy tied to its existing customer base
  • Acquires more healthcare companies

Strengthen your competitive position

Here are three competitive moves to consider today.

  • Focus on getting consumers to choose you. Consider incorporating price transparency, multiple access points and other features that consumers want from their primary care providers.
  • Strengthen your referral network to capture upstream services. Leverage your system to retain patients across the care continuum.
  • Tailor your marketing messages to the specific patients based on their preferences.

Prepare for disruption

Don't wait till Amazon Care is available to Amazon customers. Hone your strategy now.

Need a strategy partner? Call Cox Health Marketing. We help make sure you're proactively connecting with your patients, even amid disruption and change. Call us today.